Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Still time for Toys!!

With a week until Christmas, if you are still hunting for gifts for your kids or family members, don't worry there's still time!  You have to order by Sunday the 22nd to get it by Christmas.  Amazon has their 2 day shipping and LOVE their prime option.   Of course, I have my favorite list of classic toys every year to recommend- those that foster creativity and imagination like we do in Play Therapy. So I will post my faves again, but in the meantime, if you haven't checked out the great daily deals on, click below.  It's made my life sooo much easier to do my shopping online this year.


1. Blocks  
Blocks are huge.  EVERY single play therapy session I have, a child will build something with blocks and it almost brings me to tears at times to see how a quiet sheltered child, will all of a sudden create a huge masterpiece of a 'building' out of blocks.  I love seeing what can become of a plain old brown piece of wood!

Here is a good set at a great price (49.99$) Melissa & Doug 60-Piece Standard Unit Blocks
2. Doll Houses
Now, for those moms of boys out there, I know you are a little apprehensive about buying a doll house for your son.  But the super gender neutral ones are great, and there are a lot out there now that are 'green' looking.  And your boys can use different 'characters' to play with in their house, and not dolls.  The less is more philosophy is best for the doll house, that way children can use even more of their imagination!

These are great wooden doll houses:
Melissa & Doug Deluxe Wooden Furnished Dollhouse (76.99$)
Ryan's Room Home Is Where the Heart Is (99$)
 Or this green one, super cute and comes with everything! Hape All Season House - Furnished (139.99)

3.  Dress-Up Gear   My 1st Career Gear Assortment Suit (37.99$)
4.  Kitchen Play

What home doesn't have a kitchen?  Children love to act out what they already have at home and kitchens are a huge hit.  Boys are chefs too and love to pretend they are washing dishes, cooking and grilling like their dad.  This one is a good gender neutral color as well and fits in small spaces.
KidKraft Vintage Kitchen - White (157.99$)

5.  Doctor Kit 
I know I have blogged about these before, but they are still one of the all time faves of my clients.  Kids LOVE using these doctor kits and my daughter still plays with hers a whole year later. 

What are your favorite choices this year??
Saturday, December 7, 2013

Snow Day Fun Activities

Living in Texas, our weather is all over the place.  One day this week it was 80 degrees, the next, freezing cold with an ice storm that blew in called the Icepocolypse.  (We are still iced in by the way). With winter approaching us, I figured it was a good time to re-post my indoor playtime activities!

Besides the old standby activities for winter weather: building snowmen, sledding, snowball fights, roasting s'mores, baking goodies, what else is there to do?   If you and your kids are climbing the walls, here are a few different activities you can do at home when it's too dangerous to get out there and drive.

For babies, toddlers and preschoolers:

1. Set up your own sensory table: Get a rubbermaid container and fill with water or sand and have them move their toys around in it. Just make sure they don't eat the sand if they are babies.

2. A good idea for babies too is to set them in their highchair so they are contained and put a variety of food supplies on it to play with: Pudding, cool whip, any mushy food like bananas, avocado, etc. and let them be little artists
3. Make your own bubbles or homemade play dough!  Half the fun is making it.  As long as you have cream of tartar on hand for the play dough, it's so easy to make.

4. Boardgames such as Candyland, Chutes and Ladders are fun ways to have the whole family engage in an activity.

5. Block activity building for families to build something together like a Castle, a town or racetrack

6.  Make snowflakes out of paper. Remember doing this in school?
7. Decorate valentines and make heart shapes out of construction paper and decorate with glitter and glue

8. Moon Sand! Need I say more?

9.  Have them put on a puppet show and if you don't have any puppets make some! Just get some white old tube socks and paint them or decorate with markers and glue.

10.  Take your child outside with a box of water colors, or larger bottles of tempra paint and some brushes. Show them how to pack snow into a smooth surface, and let them paint. It is a different experience from painting on paper and mistakes are easily "erased" – just pile fresh snow on top.

11. Have a dance party! Just dim the lights, get out some fun dance CD's and let your little ones dance. For babies, my child loves to dance in my arms or just loves to giggle hysterically when I dance in front of her (maybe she is laughing at my bad dance moves:).

School aged kids, teens: 

1. Boardgames for the whole family such as LIFE, Jenga, checkers, chess, Clue, and Apples to Apples.
2. Building a card house

3. Watch a family movie, but then better yet, make some Origami out of your Netflix wrapper! I found this idea online:

4. Make a scavenger hunt for them with odds and ends around the house. Or have the kids make one for each other

5. Besides having fun baking cookies, you can have them make pretzel creations by lining up stick pretzels and using peanut butter as glue

6. Make snow cream. I have never done this myself but have heard a lot of kids love this stuff!

7. Create your own fort indoors with cardboard boxes

8.  Design your own crossword puzzles and mazes. This will keep them occupied for hours!


1. I know it's pretty obvious but what better time to start spring cleaning, organize your kitchen, closet and garage, finances, etc. Wow, never thought you'd have the free time huh?

2. Crank out all the On Demand TV you've been wanting to get caught up on, Dexter, Mad Men and old Lost episodes and then see the link above to make origami out of netflix wrappers. Yes you heard me correctly, there is a website dedicated to this!
3. Start cooking! All of those cookbooks that you've collected, or recipes you've cut out and never made. Now is the time you can pull them out and finally make that coq au vin, a souffle or some other ridiculously long and complicated recipe.

4. Have your own spa day with homemade masks, mani and pedis. You can do this with your little girls too.

I know there are endless possibilities, so hopefully this is a start.  What are your favorite snow day activities?

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Sweet Smell of Christmas

I just finished reading one of my favorite children's Christmas books, The Sweet Smell of Christmas (Scented Storybook) and love it so much, I just had to share with you.  Maybe it's the kid in me who LOVED scratch-n-sniff books as a child, but I get just as excited as my 3 year old does to read this book.  I saw on Amazon that it's going for 7.38$ hardback right now.   Hot chocolate, pine trees, peppermint smells...mmmm.. Do you remember those scratch-n-sniff stickers as a child? Loved those things!  Ok, I digress....

Happy Reading!

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Christmas is Coming...

Are you as stressed as I am about the upcoming holidays? I think it's because I always overcommit to stuff.  Toys, parties, school functions.  For instance in the next 7 days, I have my husband's work Christmas parties, a few moms group parties, and a few kid Christmas parties!  And then for the rest of the season there is all of the other kid fun stuff like looking at lights, seeing Santa, going to Church activities and then of course, the best day ever, Christmas Day which there is nothing like seeing my kids expressions when they run into the room and see what presents Santa brought. And then the joy of all the family getting together to celebrate....  Whew!

Yes, it can bring on stress but I really try to relish everyone being in the holiday spirit, everyone in a good mood, spreading the love. And I love decorating my house this time of year. My kids sipping hot chocolate as we put up the tree, sing songs and watch Christmas movies.

Speaking of decorating, I ran across this ad for Christmas decorating and thought to myself, gee, that would go over real well in my toddler filled home. Can you imagine my 18 month old in this room? She'd have a field day.  Her hand would be burned, the vases knocked over, ornaments thrown on the floor and glass would be in tiny pieces all over the nice animal rug on the floor.  And those white walls? Ha, they'd have dirty handprints all over them.  But one day maybe I can decorate normal again....yeah, in maybe 10 years.

How do you de-stress from the holidays?  

Something I've learned is that I think it takes making a balance between going and doing all of the fun things and taking a break.  It's easy to get caught up in all of the fun and wanting to go to the parties and events.  AND wanting to participate in your children's school activities and parties.  So whenever a party invitation or event comes across my way, I have to stop and decide "Is this something I NEED to do, or will my life be a little easier if I skip this?"  

And as far as the buying, thank goodness for Amazon.  Makes my life soo much easier.  I am all for local businesses, and when I have time I try to shop at them, but with littles at home, online is the way to go for now.  

We also try to explain to our kids the true meaning of Christmas so they don't get all wrapped up in gifts and toys.  There are always non-profit agencies in towns and I try to pick one to donate things to and explain to my children about the season of giving.

Also, to make things a little less stressful, we draw names in my extended family and now we have all agreed to only buy things for the kids. Don't get me wrong, I love giving gifts, but only if I have an unlimited bank account :)  So making our buying list shorter takes the stress down a notch ;)

And lastly having some red wine. Yep, takes it down a huge notch at the end of the evening.

How do you de-stress? 

Sunday, November 24, 2013

She's Crafty- DIY Advent Calendar

I finally pulled off my craft moment this holiday season.  Making a homemade Advent Calendar.  Oh and sidenote here, have I mentioned I am not the craft person? Well, if I have instructions and time (what's that?) I can be crafty, but I am not someone who can come up with these cute ideas on my own.

I had planned to do this one last year, but just never got it together with a 5 month old and 2 year old at home. So I started early this year and was determined to get it done!  I ordered my favor tins from Amazon last month, printed out my numbers last week and bought the hole-punch and frame at Michaels last night.  I am super proud of myself for getting it all together before December 1st- wish I could say the same about my holiday shopping list.

So of course I stole the idea from a few bloggers I read and tweeked it a bit.

Here is what you will need:
Wilton Favor Tin (25 tins)
Magnet stickers (I got 40 for 1.99$ at Michaels)
Magnet Frame (5.99$ at Michaels)
Printables, see below
Modge Podge matte formula
Fiskars Squeeze Punch X-Large, Round 'n Round

After you purchase your cute favor tins, print out your printables of numbers and the things 'to do' each day. I found these 2 options to be the cutest printables: Makoodle  and DavetDesigns.

Then take your hole punch and punch out the numbers and idea circles with your 2 inch hole punch.

Then paint a thin coat of modge podge on the front of the number, and glue to the INSIDE of the clear plastic top. Allow it to dry. I am not the best modge podger and mine still had a few bubbles on it, but hey, it's homemade and it looks like I worked hard at it. Plus it's a great instruction to give to your 3 year old to help you with the project.  She did great with painting on the glue and she feels like she was a part of making our calendar.

Here is an example of the right way to modge podge from makoodle (clearly not from my examples today):

But, I will grace you with a picture of my own workspace from today... a work in progress:

After they have dried, then you just peel and stick on the magnets to the back.  Very easy, even a 3 year old can do this!

Then you place the instructional circles inside of your tins. The bloggers I listed above have ones printed out you can use and makoodle has some blank ones you can fill out with your own family traditions.

Then you place them on the magnet board and voila! Oh and I haven't decided yet if I should put a '25' in the middle or not, since we usually didn't have Day 25 on ours when I was growing up.

I think it's so cute!  Now I just have to decide on where to place it...hmm...hang it on the fridge, put it in a plate holder to display, nail it to the wall? Ideas??

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Behavior Problems at School?

With the start of the new school year and parent teacher conferences going on, things are bound to get a little sticky when you have a preschooler.  My conference is next week and I am anxious to hear what they have to say.  I've heard they can sometimes be hard to take, especially if they tell you to think about holding your child back to start Kinder, or, sigh, that your child has 'behavior problems.'

I'm not kidding that this past week, 4 mothers have talked to me about their child reportedly having 'behavior problems' at preschool/daycare.  I just kind of blankly stare for a second into space because I think to myself, they are talking about 3 year to 4 year olds, right? And I know these kids come from well adjusted homes without verbal and physical abuse or trauma going on.  What child this age isn't throwing tantrums and 'not listening'? I figure these teachers making these accusations aren't new to working with kids.  Haven't they heard of the word 'temper tantrum' before?  Ahem. Definition: a small child crying, flailing, sometimes hitting and biting, and/or screaming when they don't get what they want = all toddlers and preschoolers.

I feel so bad for these mothers, because it's hard dealing with hearing anything negative about your child.

So I could go onto huge tangents here (like I haven't already), like how to handle any behavior problem, early ADHD symptoms, the Spectrum symptoms, what to do when your child acts out at school, how to talk to teachers, should we get them evaluated, blah blah...

But for now, I am going the easy route with just a few suggestions.  If you have some concerns, here are a few things to get started:

1) Talk to your child's doctor.  There are so many things that could cause children to have some behavior problems. Food allergies are a big one. I've read recently that gluten allergies (a sensitivity to gluten, NOT just celiac disease) can mimic hyperactivity symptoms as well as some autism symptoms. So it's worth it to get your child tested for all food allergies as well as iron levels, etc.  Also, your doctor can determine if your child is getting enough sleep, as lack of sleep can cause severe hyperactivity.

2) Meet with your child's teacher AND director.  Get specific information about what is actually going on with your child and have them write down what it is the child is doing.  Is the problem occurring the same time every day?  Maybe the child is hungry if it occurs before lunch, or tired if before nap time.  Is there another child that instigates it more?  How does the teacher react?  Try to get to the root of what the cause is to help figure out a solution.

One of my huge pet peeves are teachers that teach preschoolers because, "well, I am a mother to 4 grown children, so I have experience with kids." ah, no you don't.  Just because you had a litter of children, does not make you someone who is able to actually work with kids and teach them.  How teachers respond to children, aka discipline techniques, are HUGE!  I can't tell you how often I hear things said at schools by teachers that make me cringe!!  One example was a 1st grade teacher at an area elementary public school who hit a child on the head with a pencil and told the poor child, "come on, use your brain!!"  I about died when I witnessed that, because I thought to myself, who knows what she does when I'm NOT observing her classroom!

3) Brush up on Child Development.  I used to see a lot of parents as clients who expected far too much out of their 3 year old.  There are a lot of books and articles out there on what to expect socially, mentally, physically and cognitively out of children at different ages.  Once you get a grasp of it, then you can have a good educated discussion with the staff at your child's school about realistic expectations.

4) Lastly, and this is the hard one, look at what is going on at home.  Not to point any fingers of blame, as parenting is already a guilty profession, but look at your child's home life.  Are they involved in too many activities that could be stressing them out?  Are there marriage problems at home, stress of having small kids and your spouse arguing in front of the kids too much?  Discipline techniques? Getting enough sleep? Eating well balanced meals and not too much sugar?  Are mom and dad spending enough time with them at home? Big changes at home such as a pregnant mom, a new sibling? A move to a new home?  Job changes? etc..... Remember that children do not adjust as well as adults to change, and love routines, so if there are changes at home, they could be acting out and will need more time to adjust.

Relax. Breathe. It's only preschool at this point. They are not delinquent youths yet, so don't worry about the ankle bracelets. You are already doing what's right and listening to the feedback from the schools and taking an active role in helping your child.  Early intervention is key.  If you feel that your child needs to go beyond these beginning steps and does need help, find a child psychologist for testing (for learning disabilities, cognitive testing, etc.) and talk to a play therapist to help.  For a local play therapist directory go to

Monday, November 4, 2013

Meatless Monday

Today we started our Meatless Mondays.  As a mom, I am always trying to get my kids to eat better and eat more fruits and veggies.  But lately it's hard to get even a them to eat something like a banana, don't all kids love bananas?

We also try to eat organic as much as we can but.. sigh.  It's so expensive!  But I do the dirty 13 produce anyway. I've been reading a lot of articles and books on GMO's (genetically modified foods) and pesticides and how these environmental hazards have been causing so many illnesses (leukemia, autism, celiac disease)- it's pretty scary.  So I go the organic route as much as possible.  And don't get me started on the nitrate-free, preservative free, non-hormone, antibiotic free.  I mean, shouldn't foods be free of these things anyway?

Lately all the meat and poultry products have labels talking about 'all natural' and 'hormone free'.  We all know that eating red meat is something we need to cut back on for health/heart reasons but cutting back on eating meat can also help reduce eating all of the yucky additives they feed the animals and add to their products.  Plus cutting back reduces the greenhouse emissions associated with livestock production.

For me personally, I haven't eaten meat or pork (or wild game for that matter) since I was 18.  Yes, I get weird looks from people, especially living in Texas, the prime capital for meat eaters!  I have several reasons for not eating it, mostly because I never liked it as a child, but also because of the health benefits and animal rights.  But for my meat eating family, I now try to buy fish that is Wild Caught (less mercury and toxins) vs Farm, and buy meat products for them that are organic so they are free of the additives. But expensive as anything!

And if the additives in meat and fruit doesn't scare you, I also just finished reading the book Grain Brain: The Surprising Truth about Wheat, Carbs, and Sugar--Your Brain's Silent Killers (12$ Amazon):

It was pretty eye opening about how much the wheat grain has changed in the past 30 years due to changes to the crops (the genetically modified stuff). Basically the author talks about wheat gluten and how many of us are sensitive to it, causing ADHD, dementia, anxiety, depression, etc.   He also talks about how bad additives are and how much processed, sugar foods are damaging to our bodies.

So what are we supposed to eat if everything has toxins in it?  Seriously, it's pretty scary.  

So I vowed last night to get back on track and feed my family a good diet by starting Meatless Mondays. 

In case you haven't heard of it, it's a program that was started by Paul McCartney to encourage people to see the value in eating less meat and save money too. And being on one income, I love saving money!

If you need help getting started on trying to go meat free one day a week, there's a great cookbook about it The Meat Free Monday Cookbook: (19$)

It's definitely easier than you think.  We started with a really good Fall dish, Butternut Squash Lasagna (pictured at the top) from my fave low fat blog Laalosh! Click here for the recipe (oh and I used frozen organic chopped squash- much easier!).  The kids liked it for the most part, as long as it has cheese :) It was really good and makes for great leftovers.   And that's another benefit of eating meat free, the vegetable dishes last longer than the meat ones for left overs, just saying.

We'll see how long we can keep up with our Meatless Mondays and nitrate free, hormone free, antibiotic free, organic, non GMO, no preservative lifestyle.  It's pretty exhausting AND expensive. Anyone have any suggestions on how they keep their families diets healthy?

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween!

My darling little girls decided they wanted to be 'pink princesses' this year.  And for those not in the know, pink princess means Sleeping Beauty, aka Princess Aurora.  We have reached the age where mommy doesn't get to pick out their cute costumes anymore, but it is way more fun to have your child run up and down the aisles looking at all of the fun costume ideas.  I just LOVE Halloween and all the crazy stuff that goes along with it. 

Happy Halloween everybody!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Reward Charts

Lately my preschooler has been fighting going to bed and taking naps.  Sigh. If they only knew how great sleep was, right?  Kids fight sleep and yet have no idea how much we would LOVE to take naps and go to bed early.

So after years of doing reward charts for clients as a professional, one of my friends suggested I do a reward chart to get my child to sleep. Hello?  Mommy brain freeze. I don't know why I didn't think of that before :)

If you have been battling a chore, getting them to do homework, or going to bed at your house, reward charts are a great way to encourage your child to, ahem, behave and actually complete whatever task it is you are trying to get accomplished.  (If you want to read more about bedtime routines, I also blogged about them here)

Here are a few tips to get started:

1) If you have a young child, make sure they understand what it is you are trying to get them to do. If it's sleep: "Megan, I know you really don't want to go to sleep and rest, but rest is important for us to grow and get bigger!"  And explain what it means to rest. In our house, our daughter knows that rest time means she has to stay in her bed, and only call for us if she needs to go to the bathroom, or is sick and uses her quiet voice when reading a book in bed.

Or if it's picking up toys, make sure it's realistic such as you giving them 10 items to pick up off the floor and put in a bin.  Young children can't be expected to, "pick up all of your toys and put them back where they belong."  Give them a few items and tell them where they need to go.  It also helps to sing a 'clean-up' song.

2) Explain to them what a reward chart is: "Megan, since you have not been wanting to pick up your toys before bedtime, we are going to make a chart to help.  Each time you pick up the toys and put them back where they belong, then you will get a sticker on the chart!!  If you get (4) stickers, then you get to pick out a prize."

3) Prizes.  This can get tricky. We encourage prizes to be non-food related, so as not to associate food with rewards.  Prizes can be anything from picking out something from the Dollar Bins at Target or Dollar Tree, or giving a sticker sheet to even the 5$ bin at some stores (there is a 5$ bin at Target in the princess toy aisle).  Or if they are older, you can give them a bigger prize for a month's worth of stickers.

Another idea is to have a treasure box, and put little dollar store items in it, then once they accumulate 'x' amount of stickers, they can pick something out of the treasure box!

If you are not wanting to give material objects, then you can think of other rewards such as 30 minutes of finger painting, or some sort of art activity that is reserved for special times.
You can also give the reward of watching their favorite movie (if you don't let them do that all the time that is :).

I love the 'Alone Time' prize too, where the child gets alone time with each parent (of course it will require some planning for this :)

4) Make the chart!  Here is the fun part.  You can design your own chart, or you can order one online (see below).
With young children, start with 4 days since to them 4 days is like a month to adults.
If you are making one, make sure to draw out the chart with the days and a space for the picture of what it is they are needing to do.
Draw a picture of the goal, or use the pictures provided on the chart. Children need to see a visual of what the goal is to help motivate them, and to help them understand what the heck is going on :)

Get some star stickers or use whatever their favorite stickers are and once they complete the task, have them put their own stickers in the right square to help motivate them and empower their choice in doing what was asked of them.

You can also post a picture of the reward they are working for at the top of the page, so they can be more motivated to follow through.

See, not so hard huh?  You can add as many goals are just have one on your chart, depending on what you are wanting to accomplish.

This chart,
Kenson Kids - "I Can Do It" Reward and Responsibility Chart Made in the USA, (19.99$) has 20 pictures of chores/behaviors you can stick on and comes with the stars.  It even has the 'go to bed and stay in bed' picture!

The Melissa & Doug Deluxe Magnetic Responsibility Chart (19.99 on Amazon), comes with 90 magnets and pictures with behaviors and rewards such as 'get ready for bed', and 'say please and thank you'.

 Or you can just use a blank one and print it out yourself and fill in the blanks like this one:

Or this cute one!  Click on the link and then download it.

How about you, do you have great reward chart ideas that have worked in your home?
Monday, October 14, 2013

Best New Toys 2013

Just a quick post tonight on Time to Play's list of top toys for 2013.  For those that want to start shopping for the holidays:

I am so excited about the new Big Hugs Elmo and all the new Doc McStuffins toys!
Sunday, October 6, 2013

Mommy Relaxation

Being a part of the Blog Her network, they asked a few of us bloggers if we had any posts about Moms taking Breaks and Relaxation, or basically any mom post NOT related to parenting.  I thought, surely I had written something like that, because it's one of the most important task for moms.  If moms don't take breaks, then they aren't going to be the best parent.

But as I looked through all of my posts, gasp, I didn't have one!  So alas, this post is long overdue about mommy time, relaxing and taking breaks, kid-free.

As a woman and a mother, whether you work outside the home or are a stay at home mom, responsibilities fall on you like no tomorrow.  Your partner can have all the best intentions in the world and be the best helper out there, but they still don't think of everything.  Period.  When we go to bed at night, our mind races and we are thinking: Did I pack enough for her lunch tomorrow?  I hope my baby doesn't cry when I drop her off at daycare tomorrow.  I need to order the shoes for her Halloween costume.  Oh, yeah, I forgot to call a sitter for our date night next weekend.  Did I run the dishwasher? I need to wash her favorite dress tomorrow morning because she needs to wear it on Saturday.  My kids pooped today, right? 

Am I right or what? What husband/partner has these things running through their head? And believe me, there are a ton more thoughts we think of, those were just the first few minutes.

So it goes without saying that moms need a break too and to be better mommies!  You can't be a sane, mentally healthy parent if you aren't well rested (and have kid free, breaks :).

Here are a few tips for new mommies and old, stay at home mommas and working crazy hour mommas.  And yes, hello, a beach vacation is. so the best. relaxation tip. ever.  But when we can't take a vacay:

1) For Newborn Mommas: If you have a newborn, you are glued to the baby non-stop for feeding, holding and rocking.

When several of my friends went through the baby blues, they thought they were going to lose it with the stress of a new baby. So the best advice I could give was to get out of the house.  For just 30 minutes, find time to get away to gain a little sanity back.  I know it's hard to leave, but first feed your baby, then have your partner or family member watch the baby and go.  Just go. Walk around Target, buy a trashy tabloid magazine and gaze around you at the wonder of life without a baby. Yes, life does go on. The hard part is realizing you can never just take off and run an errand on a whim without planning on who is watching your child. It's no longer just you.  Which leads me to the next tip:

2) Plan Some Free Time!
You now have to schedule your free time once you have a child.  But do schedule it, put it on the calendar.  Whatever it is you need to do to relax, schedule it so you will actually do it.  And allow yourself this time.  If you work outside the home, you want to spend all of your free time with your kids at night, and on the weekends, but you STILL need some time away.  So schedule it already.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Halloween Goodies II

Here is my annual preschool Halloween books and movies post!  Some repeats here as they are always good classics!  I always buy 1-2 additional Halloween books every year, I just love this season.  And we are all ready for that Fall season with Pumpkin spiced everything and cooler weather!


1) For babies and toddlers Five Little Pumpkins ($5.39) 

Five little pumpkins sitting on a gate.  The first one said, "Oh my, it's getting late."Get ready for some wicked fun as these five pumpkins run and roll! My children have loved this sweet rhyming book the past few years and love that it's a board book.

2) For Preschoolers:
Little Critter: Happy Halloween, Little Critter!  ($6.29)
My preschooler loves this book!  It has lift the flaps in it too and she loves all of the different halloween characters.

3) We love the If You Give A Mouse book series, and haven't read this one yet, but plan on ordering it!  My preschooler and toddler will love reading this one.

It's Pumpkin Day, Mouse! (If You Give...)  ($6.12 Board Book) The mouse decorates all of the pumpkins in the pumpkin patch with different faces.

4) For all ages:
The Hallo-wiener ($5.71)

This one is close to our hearts because we have a little Dachshund at our home and tells a great Halloween story, kind of like the Ugly Duckling.

5) There is the always popular : Haunted Clubhouse (Disney Mickey Mouse Clubhouse) (6.29$) 

6) We love the 'night before' series and especially their  The Night before Halloween ($3.59)
'Twas the night before Halloween, and all through the house, All the creatures were stirring, except for the mouse. The monsters had gathered to plan and prepare, For the trick-or-treaters who soon would be there?."

7) Doc McStuffins Boo to You!   (7$) This one is a touch and feel book and my 4 and 2 year old love this episode on TV and also enjoy this book too! And it's a great board book to take in the car and not worry about it getting torn up.

8) And one more for the preschool and school aged kids: Room on the Broom (6.29$). We love this book at our house and there is an App on the iPhone too that's super fun and cute.  

The witch and her cat are happily flying through the sky on a broomstick when the wind picks up and blows away the witch's hat, then her bow, and then her wand!  Luckily, three helpful animals find the missing items, and all they want in return is a ride on the broom.  But is there room on the broom for so many friends?  And when disaster strikes, will they be able to save the witch from a hungry dragon?

TV Shows and Movies

Halloween season isn't complete until they've seen a few Halloween cartoon specials and movies. Don't forget to DVR some of the ones coming up for free, and the Disney Jr episodes like the Halloween Doc McStuffins.

1)Spookley the Square Pumpkin  ($9.98) About a square pumpkin who is different and feels left out, but then saves the day after a storm hits the pumpkin patch!

2) The All-Time Classic!  Look for this one on TV and DVR it, if not order it here: It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown (Remastered Deluxe Edition) ($10.99)


3) This one I haven't seen yet, but looks really cute!
Curious George: A Halloween Boo Fest ($9.96)

4) Thomas Halloween. Need I say more if you have a preschooler who loves trains?
Thomas & Friends: Halloween Adventures (free for Amazon prime streaming, or $9.99)

6) And for the older child, like an Alice in Wonderland Halloween adventure (but mostly for kids 10 and up)
Coraline ($6.99)


So there you have it. My picks for your little ones this Halloween.  Have fun getting in the spirit and Happy Halloween!